Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Thought I'd move everything over to Tumblr for a better look and better mobile experience. All archived blogs have been carried over. Visit here: http://ruanaich.tumblr.com

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Glencoe, Sunday 26 May 2013

The week after my previous visit to Glencoe they decided to close all uplift due to warmer and wetter conditions. It had been a fantastic snow filled season, not just in quantity but the quality of snow was outstanding.
However I had reached 16 days on Scottish snow. This equaled my previous record. I was left wanting more!
There had been some chatter about hiking up the mountain at Coe. They were positively encouraging it on their Facebook page. 
The weekend came Saturday was blue sky, but everyone was busy and I decided to take a bike ride instead. I rode down to parents house and decided to take their car and head up to Coe on Sunday morning. 
The day dawned slightly grey. There was a glimmer on sun. But that came to nothing. I took the chairlift up and started my hike. It was an easy trudge up The Wall and then Happy Valley, then across the summit to the top of Main Basin. On the way up I messed about with filming on iPhone, ContourHD & EOS7D. Messed about in Main Basin, then took a full run down, through the Haggis Trap, which was full. The snow was completely smooth with no other tracks. At rescue hut level I walked past top of Cliffy chair then down lower Thrombosis till the snow ran out where it joined Mugs Alley. 
The day was grey with a few light showers. But light winds and reasonable temperatures. 
The whole trip was worth it just to beat my record & to get some turns in after my birthday!

Search for Snow from Michael MacDonald on Vimeo.

Thursday, May 02, 2013

Glencoe, Saturday 27th April 2013

The upper slopes of Glencoe Mountain Resort have some of the best late season conditions we've seen in a long time and look set to offer skiing for the May holiday, depending on the weather of course.The snow is in great condition as it has remained dry, without the usual freeze/thaw action of a typical Scottish Winter. The Main Basin was fluffy with wind packed powder. Flypaper was steep and a wee bit scary (Scotland's steepest marked run) and Happy Valley, skier's left was in fine form. It's astounding that ski areas are finished for the season in the USA and Europe, but Scotland persists!You may be out of luck if you can't ride the drag lifts as the lower slopes have gone, but jump on the top T-bar at Glencoe and you'll have a veritable snowy feast.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Glencoe, Saturday 20th April 2013

Was unsure whether the weather would work out. Gales were forecast at high level and Coe were not updating their Facebook page. Kept checking and it wasn't looking good. I phoned and asked about the wind. "There is no wind" they said. I was in the car before you could say Spring Snow.
The car park was rammed full. Still didn't stop me parking at the ticket office. This was down to a triathlon not skiers though.
The wind came to nothing and the clouds skimmed over with plenty of sunny spells.
The tops had beautiful smooth spring snow and the bottom of mugs alley is getting slushy but fun. Rannoch Glades was fantastic and the canyon was fun. A few queues at times at the rescue hut so messed about lower down between runs up top.
Been a great season which hopefully will keep going. It's getting expensive though. I should have gambled on a season pass methinks.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Glencoe, Saturday 13th April 2013

Day started with a bit of dubiety with regards to the weather. Wind an temperatures were set to rise through the day. Visibility in the morning was non existent but the whole mountain unveiled itself around 2:00. This meant we could go everywhere and anywhere, and the snow was some of the best non-powder I've ever ridden. Because its been so dry this season, even the chop is fluffy.
We did all the usual runs along with Rannoch Glades, Thrombosis and the Canyon.
The wind stayed down so we got to the end of the skiing day.
An amazing day today with some of the best snow ever.